Canine supplements: does your dog need vitamins and food additives?

  • Food-Treats
,December 08, 2020
Canine supplements: does your dog need vitamins and food additives?

Vitamin and mineral balance is important for both humans and dogs. The menu for a pet, popular among many owners, consisting of a variety of soups, cereals, stews and other dishes, can hardly become a serious source of nutrients and vitamins for a dog - it is, rather, support for the correct functioning of the digestive tract, nothing more. In addition, modern technologies for processing products in production reduce the content of nutrients in them to a minimum.

Dog vitamins and their features

Ready-made industrial dog food contains multivitamin complexes and even in many ways solves the problem of lack of substances that are indispensable for normal life. But even in this case, one should not hope for an absolute result: who will be able to guarantee the complete assimilation of individual components of the feed and their effective interaction in certain areas of the dog's gastrointestinal tract?

Modern pharmacology knows more than 30 types of vitamins, but you should not try to "feed" them all to the dog to waste. Even a small amount of substances (up to several hundredths of a milligram per day) already has a beneficial effect on metabolic processes, stimulates the proper development of organs and systems, and in general has a very positive effect on the general condition of the dog.

It makes no sense to describe all the vitamins and supplements necessary for dogs, but it is still worth dwelling in more detail on the most famous and most significant ones.







Vitamin A (retinol)


Dog growth factor, maintenance of vision and good skin condition, development of the animal's skeletal system and improvement of reproductive functions. Many people associate vitamin A with carrots, and for good reason: an orange pigment obtained from red carrots. Other products rich in vitamin A: sea fish, which the dog owners often dislike due to its lower nutritional value and abundance of bones. You can add fish oil or vitamin A on an oil basis to the diet.







Vitamins of group B 


They provide normal metabolic processes, have a regulating effect on the functions of the central nervous system, stimulate hematopoiesis, and normalize liver function. B vitamins facilitate shedding, give the coat a shiny, healthy look, and prevent skin flaking. The richest source of vitamins of this group is brewer's yeast! Yeast protein is complete and highly digestible. It contains most of the essential amino acids. Also, brewer's yeast helps to increase the efficiency of digestion, as it serves as an excellent nutrient medium for the development of normal gastric microflora. Due to its properties, brewer's yeast increases the body's resistance to diseases and significantly shortens the recovery period, has a general strengthening effect on animals.







Vitamin C (ascorbic acid)


The level of immunity depends, first of all, on ascorbic acid. C-hypovitaminosis is the most common occurrence in dogs, since the amount of this vitamin in many foods varies depending on the season (in winter and spring its content is less). In addition, cooking and long-term storage of food partially destroys vitamin C. Therefore, fruits, herbs and vegetables (potatoes, cabbage, spinach) should be included in the dog's diet. Liver also contains a lot of vitamin C. Prevention and treatment of hypovitaminosis is carried out using a dosage form of vitamin C. Vitamin D (calciferol). Forms immunity and regulates calcium-phosphorus metabolism in the dog's body. A deficiency can cause rickets (in puppies) and osteoporosis (in adult dogs). Yeast and fish oil are indispensable for the diet as a source of vitamin D.




Vitamin E (tocopherol) 


A powerful antioxidant that maintains the reproductive function of the dog at the required level and promotes the development of muscles, therefore, its deficiency, although rare, is dangerous to the occurrence of infertility. Vitamin E is found in sufficient quantities in cereals (oat and buckwheat), vegetable oil and egg yolk, in meat products.




Vitamin K (phylloquinone)


Vitamin K is directly involved in the blood clotting process. A deficiency of this substance is observed in dogs with intestinal and liver diseases, as well as in puppies that do not get enough vitamin K from their mother's milk. K-avitaminosis is manifested by numerous hemorrhages in the neck, back, sternum and hind limbs. Large amounts of vitamin K are found in spinach and cabbage.





PP (nicotinic acid)


Vitamin PP is used to treat and prevent dermatitis, which manifests itself on the skin with dark brown pigment spots, cracks and is accompanied by disruption of the central nervous system and diarrhea, as a result of which the dog's body is depleted. This vitamin is prescribed for dry skin, inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract and some nervous diseases after a plague. At the same time, the dog's diet includes the main sources of vitamin PP - fish, meat, liver of farm animals, cheese, legumes and yeast.


Canine supplements

Today our pet market offers a huge variety of vitamin and mineral complexes for dogs. Oddly enough, there is no unified classification of vitamin preparations for dogs, but for ease of understanding, conditionally, all supplements can be divided into several groups:

  • Vitamin and mineral preparations of general action (multivitamins);
  • Corrective vitamin and mineral preparations;
  • Vitamin and mineral preparations of enhanced action.
  • Each group is designed to prevent and solve a certain type of problem.


Vitamins of general action are fortifying vitamin and mineral complexes, which include substances essential for the active life of a dog: vitamins A, D, E, vitamins of group B, as well as potassium, phosphorus, calcium and other useful micro- and macroelements. A competently and carefully selected composition of the multivitamin complex has a beneficial effect on all systems and organs of the dog, strengthens the immune system and reduces the risk of infectious diseases. In addition, manufacturers delight pets with a variety of tastes of vitamin supplements: it can be liver, cheese, beef, salmon and other flavors.

The group of corrective vitamins for dogs was created to prevent diseases, improve the body, prevent or eliminate existing health problems. This also determines their composition: the content of specific substances necessary to achieve certain goals can be increased in the preparation, or additional ingredients can be introduced that actively affect the problem area of ​​the animal's body.

Corrective vitamin supplements are preparations for hair and skin, strengthening the musculoskeletal system, improving vision, reducing shedding time, etc. Vitamins for aging animals, for puppies and dogs of large and small breeds, which allow maintaining the vital activity of the animal at the proper level, can be attributed to the same category.

For ease of use, vitamins for dogs are available in various dosage forms: paste, capsules, tablets, oil solutions, injections.

You, as a responsible owner, must always remember: in order not to harm the health of your ward, it is very important to give vitamins in doses recommended by the manufacturer and no longer than the period indicated on the package.

Vitamins of enhanced action are intended for the most active dogs: training, working and fighting dogs. The same group is recommended for emaciated and weakened pets who have suffered injuries or infectious diseases, as well as during the recovery period after surgery. These preparations are based on a unique ratio of active nutrients that help strengthen the immune system, build muscle mass and increase the dog's stamina level. This is a kind of "energy cocktail" that effectively restores strength, so necessary for an inquisitive and active dog.